Mile 20

Saddle Rock, Crook Point
Curry County

Latitude: 42.248269972537
Longitude: -124.407584918990
Vehicles:
  • Motor vehicles are prohibited from Meyers Creek (42° 18.4422', Mile 23), southerly to the Oregon-California border (41° 59.9208', Mile 1).
Tides: NOAA Tide Predictions. Click on the station nearest to your location to see predicted tides in graphical and tabular formats.
Saddle Rock, Crook Point
Mile 20 Reports (35)

2015

January 13, 2015 - D Bilderback
One person and two dogs were seen on the beach. We saw over 60 Harbour Seals and 5 whales in the near shore ocean. Black Oystercatchers, Western Gulls and Mew Gulls were heard and seen on and near the beach. Otter, raccoon and deer tracks were seen on the beach...read more
  • On the left is a photo of the south headland taken on 6/5/10 and on the right is one taken on 1/13/2015.  You can see how dramatically the headland has been eroded by the high seas and unstable slopes.
  • Juvenile Black Oystercatcher with darker tipped bill.  This bird was by him or her self on the north side of the point.
  • High sand level has covered the boulder fields in this cove.  This year there is less wood in this cove than in other years.
  • Lots of wood and drift in the north part of this mile high up on the beach near the headland this year.
  • This sand bank show erosion by the ocean during high storm events.  The large boulders are newly on this beach.
  • Large amounts of duff are washed into the ocean and end up in piles on this south facing headlands.  This photo shows one of these piles that has been broken and eroded back into the ocean.
  • This tree was on a piece of land that fell down the headland a couple of years ago but was upright until this winter when it has fallen over in the storm events.

2013

May 15, 2013 - D Bilderback
Except for one small heavy patch of drift, the driftline was sparse with kelp/algae, Leather Bryozoa and crab carapaces. 25 Harbor Seals swimming in bay or hauled out on offshore rocks, Canada Geese flying north over ocean, Brandt's Cormorants nesting on offshore rock, A Raven nesting on a offshore rock,...read more
March 8, 2013 - D Bilderback
The driftline was absent except for two localized areas with terrestrial-derived leaves, mosses, wood pieces, some shredded blades of Pterygophora(Old Growth Kelp) and a few invertebrates and other algae and kelp. 65 Harbor Seals resting on offshore rocks, two Peregrine, one Brandt's Cormorant, and three Brown Pelicans flying north over...read more
  • Very little driftline today on the beach.  However, the headlands all have been eroded by the ocean. Dave is removing non-native ice plant from the headland.
  • We found several of these on the beach today.

2012

December 9, 2012 - D Bilderback
Peregrine Falcon resting on south end of Saddle Rock. Flock of Red Crossbills, Black Phoebe, 26 Ring-billed Gulls, Evening Grossbeak, a flock of Pine Siskins & Bewick's Wren on beach. A pair of Black Oystercatchers each on Seal Rock and south beach. American Kestrel & Red-tailed Hawk flying over the...read more
  • The boulder field that normally is underwater except at low tides is now covered with a layer of sand, making an isthmus to the island.
  • Heavy surf and storms have moved new driftwood into the north cove of Crook Point. New sand is coverin the normal boulder shore.
  • Nancy is pointing to some of the thickest layer of forest duff.  We estimated that it is about 1 1/2 foot deep.
  • Notice that there isn't much drift today in this area.
  • I was able to get this photo by going out on the sand isthmus and looking back at the headland.  There was sand along the base of the headland, which was unusual for this time of the year.  Normally, sand levels rise in this are in the summer.
  • I took this photo from the sand isthmus looking back at Saddle Rock and the western portion of Crook Point.
  • The boulders in this area had a thick growth of Phyllospadix (Sea Grass)and the sand has covered the boulders and is in the process of covering the Phyllospadix as well.
  • Old Growth Kelp (Pterygophora)has a foot long stipe and all that is left is the blades of these larger kelps as the sand has covered the boulder that they are growing on as well as their stipes.
  • This was a good opportunity to take a unique photo of the large landslide area at the southern end of Mile 20 from what is normally the middle of the bay!
  • This view shows how large this landslide is and why many of the road along the coast have cracks in them.  All of the land is on the move down to the ocean!
  • Middle Mile 20 has lots of new driftwood pushed by the high surf up against the headland.
  • Lots of sand has been removed from the south beach exposing cobbles along the headlands.
  • This shows the tree that came down this past year.
May 17, 2012 - D Bilderback
Light driftline with 12 different genera of kelp and algae, terrestrial mosses, Leather Bryozoa (Flustrellidra corniculata), the flowering plant, Phyllospadix (Seagrass) and small rocks. Notable wildlife included one Peregrine Falcon, 10 Brown Pelicans, one Pacific Loon, 13 Harbor Seals in south bay and hauled out on offshore rocks, seven Canada...read more
  • This large Musashi Float may have come from the Japan tsumani.  When we googled it there have been other floats like this found in Alaska and in Washington this year.
  • This photo shows the Musashi name and brand.
  • This photo is taken from the north headland looking south.  No driftline today.
  • The native buttercups (Ranculus)are blooming among the rockweed (Spatulate Sedums)today on the headland.
  • Sand in the front and driftwood at the back of the North Cove today.
  • At the south end of the Crook Point beach, the hillside is slumping it's way to the beach.
  • Notice that the soil has erroded away from the roots.  We are wondering how long it takes for this tree to die as it is obviously still growing now.
  • On the south beach, sand has been removed from beach while driftwood remains on rocks.

2011

September 7, 2011 - D Bilderback
Three boats seen drifting very close to offshore rocks. Except for two deflated party balloons the north cove beach lacked a driftline. Sand had accumulated in the cove. Five Black Oystercatchers on northern rocks or flying over the bay. Yellow Sandverbena blooming along the west headland and middle beach area...read more
  • Boats are not suppose to be this close to offshore rocks so that they do not disturb nesting birds on the rocks. This rock is in the south bay of Crook Point.
  • Dave and Robin Rauch are on the beach, looking at the algae and driftline.
  • Photo taken from middle beach looking back at Crook Point headland.
  • I've taken this photo for a comparison for this winter's erosion.  This area is an active landslide area most winters.
  • Yellow Sand Verbena blooms along the headland, as well as in the sand near the west headland and along the middle beach area.
  • We saw three Wandering Tattlers on the beach today.
  • Looking south, you can see that the south part of the mile has had a lot of sand build up this year.
  • This photo shows how far this box is from the headland.
  • Dogs had dug out a part of this bones only carcass of an unidentified sea lion.  Dave continued the process to see if he could find a skull but was not successful.  This has been reported to the MMSN.
July 28, 2011 - D Bilderback
The south beach lacked driftline and sand has accumulated around the drift logs and over the large rocks at the base of the headland. The middle beach had two areas of heavy drift consisting of kelp and algae, some Leather Bryozoa (Flustrellidra)and 1 dead Pisaster (Sea Star) . The north...read more
  • The beach has little drift today.
  • Notice how high the surf is today!
  • This photo is taken from the west headland looking north into the wind.
  • Looking northwest from the middle of the south beach towards the headland.  Only this small section of the beach had any kelp/algae accumulation today.
  • Sand is filling in the rocks and logs at the base of the south headland of Crook Point.
May 17, 2011 - D Bilderback
The driftline was light on the southern and northern portions of the beach but heavy on the middle portion of the beach with large amounts of kelp/algae and forest duff. The driftline contained 16 kinds of algae/kelp, Hydrozoa, Bryozoa, one Pisaster star, worm tubes, Sea Pork Tunicates and a skate...read more
  • The tree was dropped to the beach by a large landslide along the south portion of Mile 20.
  • This is another look at the tree that was dropped to the beach by the landslide.
  • This whole hillside is slumping into the ocean and additional trees and bushes were brought down to the beach.
  • This photo is taken looking northwest from the south border of Mile 20.
February 10, 2011 - D Bilderback
On the south beach, the driftline was light with small rocks and a few pieces of kelp and surfgrass, Phyllospadix. Large boulders and logs were along the base of the headland. Extensive landslides along the headland has brought down trees and clumps of vegetation. The bluff has retreated, exposing large...read more
  • Little drift on this part of the beach today.
  • The iris clump at the bottom of the slide was part of a larger iris group about 10 feet above the beach.
  • The surf must have been huge to throw this large and heavy storage container up over 10 feet from the shore of the beach!
  • Notice the dirt over the log at the base of this landslide, indicating that it is fairly recent.
  • The winter rains have helped erode out boulders and make a large trench in this part of the landslide this year.
  • Another good indicator of land movement is a tree that is obviously sliding down the slope. This is just north of the large southern landslide at the end of Mile 20.
  • Here's a close up of that exposed Marah oreganus root.  This root was probably about 6 inches in diameter and over two feet in length.
  • Swordferns and grass clumps have come down onto the beach in this landslide.
  • This photo shows moss and pine needles in the driftline, which is what we saw in previous duff wash-ups. The sand was very soft in this area, indicating that it was covering an area of duff.
  • There is only a light driftline when you look southeast from the western headland of Crook Point.
  • No drift in the North Cove of Crook Point today.
January 28, 2011 - D Bilderback
The north cove had little or no driftline, and sand had been removed exposing large rocks at the base of the bluff. Large drift logs rested on the rocks. The driftline had a large amount of terrestrial duff of moss and leaf litter. A major landslide had slumped into the...read more
  • The pink outlines the area of the landslide.
  • The dark soil highlights the landslide.  Again, the pink line outlines the area of the slide. The soil behind the large boulder has been eroded away from the hillside.
  • The darker hillside soil has clearly covered the logs at the bottom of the slide and large rocks are eroded out of the soil behind the large boulder.
  • High seas have eroded the lower sand from the hillside causing this slump of the large Yellow Sand Verbena patch on the southwest part of Crook Point headland.
  • Even the most western point of Crook Point has had a small landslide.
  • Notice the large fish pink/orange floats on the beach.  The light brown lines are mainly forest duff that has drifted in from the heavy rains.
  • Heavy rains have washed forest duff on the beach.  Here you can see fir needles and moss.
  • We wonder what tasty morsels would cause the raccoons to dig up this area?
  • We found 4 of these pretty shells on our beach walk today.

2010

October 20, 2010 - D Bilderback
Don Suva helped us remove five bags (over 130 pounds) of ice plant from the headland rock and upper dune area of the north cove of Crook Point. Ropes and a plastic crab float were removed from the beach. Ice plant that could not be carried out was stored and...read more
  • Lots of driftwood and boulders at the northern part of the cove.  Not shown was a very battered fish storage tank and floats.  We removed a rope and float from this area as well.
  • The large rock and adjoining sandy area had lots of iceplant that has been removed (bags visible to the left of the rock).  Little drift on the beach today.
  • Over 130 pounds of ice plant were removed today, but the rest of the plants will need to be hauled out this coming spring.
  • Very interesting weather today as we had fog in the morning, followed by clearing and now the heavy clouds are coming in.
  • Looking towards the south end of Mile 20, sand has covered the boulders and is piling up against the headland.
  • Almost no drift on the beach today.
  • This box has moved over 200 feet to the south.  It is too heavy to move with even three people!
  • This beautiful blooming Pink Sand Verbena (Abronia umbellata) plant was found up against the headland sands near the western point.  Another plant was also found in the area, but it was not blooming.
  • Little drift on the beaches today.
July 13, 2010 - D Bilderback
We spent the early morning hours exploring the intertidal area during this low tide. Please see the photos for some of the interesting animals and algae that were found. Sixty-five Harbor Seals on rocks and in the bay. Five Black Oystercatchers on north rock. Flock of Hermann's Gulls with California...read more
  • This Leopard Dorid Nudibranch (Diaulula sandiegensis) eats sponges.
  • This stripped pattern is occasionally seen in Gumboot Chitons (Cryptochiton stelleri).  Normally, the outer mantle is a dark brown or red color.
  • We often find these pretty Blood Stars (Henricia leviuscula leviuscula) in the Crook Point intertidal area.
  • This is the dorsal (or top) side of this very large pink sea star.  This is the third time that we have found this sea star in the Crook Point intertidal area.
  • Notice the long tube feet of this beautiful Giant Pink Star (Pisaster brevispinus).  While I turned this sea star over to take this photo, the sea star was returned to the tidepool.
  • There's not much drift on beach close to the western point.
  • Notice the orange bill of this Heermann's Gull. These gulls generally are around at this time of the year here at Crook Point.
  • This photo shows the landslide scarps all along this headland.  This whole area is very active geologically and frequently has landslides during the rainy, wet period of the year.
May 28, 2010 - D Bilderback
No driftline in the north cove. A moderate driftline on the middle beach with a localized heavy concentration near the middle of the beach. The south beach had no driftline. Eighteen species of kelp/algae, Hydrozoa, five Sea Stars, three species of Bryozoa (Flustrellidra, Crisia and Tricellaria), a sponge (Neoesperiopsis), Sea...read more
  • This Stalked Compound Tunicate, Distaplia sp.,is about 2 inches in diameter.
  • Very little drift on the beach in this part of our mile.
  • This section is about 1/3 to 1/2 mile south of the headland and has quite a bit of decomposing drift on the beach.
  • This spring has been unusually wet and there were numerous waterfalls coming off of the headland.
  • No driftline contents on this clean beach!
  • This area often has boulders visible in the winter but sand has covered most of them except those next to the headland.
  • The diagonal crack and other cracks have deepened this past winter.
February 2, 2010 - D Bilderback
Ten species of kelp/algae, Hydrozoa, Leather Bryozoa (Flustrellidra spinifera), a sponge (Neoesperiopsis), Sea Pork (Aplidium), small rocks, wood pieces and ocean-based debris in the driftline. Two bags of debris removed from beach. Seventeen Harbor Seals on an offshore rock or swimming in the bay. Two Black Oystercatchers on offshore rock...read more
  • There are less boulders and logs evident today than on our last visit.
  • Don and Leslie Suva joined us today.  Here he is shown removing ice plant from the headland.  We look for and remove ice plant each time we come to Crook Point.
  • We removed two bags of beach garbage today.  Notice how the foredune sand and headland have been eroded in this section of the beach.
  • Sand Verbena (Abronia latifolia) roots are exposed from the sand that has been eroded from this part of the foredune.
  • The ocean has removed both sand on top and rocky headland on the bottom since December.
  • Exposed tree roots shows that this tree may be next to tumble down to the beach.
  • Lots of logs on the beach in this section.
  • Lots of sand has been removed exposing more boulders along the southern part of the mile.  We saw many more logs than last month.  High ocean surf prevented us from walking south on this part of the beach today.
  • We noticed that this storage container left our beach last month but it has return this month.  We wondered where it journeyed last month.
  • These headlands are normally covered with sand at the base but the ocean surf has washed it away.

2009

December 3, 2009 - D Bilderback
We saw four crab boats to the west of Crook Point today. A small amount of shells, kelp/algae, Hydrozoa, Bryozoa and tunicates in the driftline. Considerable amounts of wood and logs on beach. High tides and seas reaching and undercutting the headland as well as removing sand and exposing rocks...read more
  • Today's 10+ foot tides were racing into North Cove today.
  • The sound was deafening when the waves would break and crash into the off-shore islands of the Crook Point headland!  This photo was taken from the Crook Point headland looking north onto off-shore islands.
  • Notice how the sand has been removed at the toes of the foredunes and the large number of logs high up on the beach.  These are all new developments this month.
  • The toe of the foredune has been removed by today's 10+ foot tide.
  • This section of beach about 1/2 mile southeast of the western point has had sand removed, exposing boulders.  The high tides have brought in lots of wood.
  • About six feet of sand have been removed from this section of the beach, exposing large boulders.  We saw this happen last year as well during this time of the year.
  • This closeup shows how the ocean has scoured even the headland besides removing the sand from the boulders.
October 1, 2009 - D Bilderback
The southern portion of the mile continues to accumulate sand but lacked any drift. Sand continues to move into the middle portion of the mile (western most point to 2/3 mile southeast of the point) and had areas of heavy accumulations of drift consisting of Seagrass, kelp/algae, wood and a...read more
  • Sand continues to accumulate in this cove, but no drift today.
  • Areas of this beach had heavy drift.  One spot is visible in this picture but the heaviest drift was just at the southern edge of the beach that is not visible.
  • We often find dead Gumboot Chitons washed up on this beach.  They are quite numerous in the intertidal area here and when they detach from an area are at risk of being washed up on the beach as the tide comes in.
  • Most of this drift was kelp and algae.
  • This can come in various colors but this particular piece is quite bright in comparison to most of the more brown or almost translucent pieces of Sea Pork.
  • This skull was detached from the pelt and bones carcass.
  • The teeth on this upper skull show some wear and no space between the last two molars which marks it as a California Sea Lion.  If there was a space, it would be a Steller's Sea Lion.
  • We think this is a rock fish skull but we can't identify the genus or species without more of the body.
  • This large fish storage container has been moving south along this beach for over two years.  Unfortunately, it is too large for us to carry out.
August 13, 2009 - D Bilderback
Kelp/algae, small rocks, animal casings, wood pieces and cones, a few shells, Leather Bryozoa, Hydrozoa and Sea Pork in the driftline. River Otter tracks on the beach. Steller's and California Sea lions on offshore rocks. Pelagic Cormorants and Hermann's Gulls on the bay. Over 40 Harbor Seals hauled out on...read more
  • Rocks separating the south part of the mile from the middle part of the mile are being covered over with sand.  Estimate of more than 4 feet of sand in places.
  • This solid but rubbery feeling mass is a colonial tunicate that as washed ashore.  They grow in dense clumps that can be broken apart by wave action and then washed ashore.
  • The River Otter tracks came down along a small stream and disappeared at the surf zone.  We often see otter tracks in this area.
  • The brown stalks on this plant are the dried flower stalks. Quite a few plants were growing on the steep gravely south hillside and all had lots of dried flower stalks.
  • This common coastal plant grows on all the steep headland slopes here on Mile 20. This particular species, Eriogonum nudum var. paralinum, lacks hairs on its flowering stalks.
  • Queen Ann's Lace, Daucus carota, had not been seen on the beaches or headland of the Crook Point Refuge until this year.  We suspect that it came in with last winter's duff.  This invasive plant was removed from the beaches.
  • Not much drift along the north part of the beaches today.
  • The sand has really moved in this summer, covering the rocks and boulders down in North Cove.
July 23, 2009 - D Bilderback
Kelp/algae, animal casings, wood pieces, Leather Bryozoa, Hydrozoa and one Gumboot Chiton in driftline. Two Common Murre and one Brandt's Cormorant dead on beach. Rhinoceros Auklet, Pelagic Cormorant, Pigeon Guillemont, Red-throated Loon, Double-crested Cormorant in bay. Cliff Swallows flying over beach. 45 Harbor Seals in bay and on off-shore rocks...read more
  • This photo shows the off-shore rocks to the south of Crook Point.
  • The rocks along the bay are exposed on today's low tide.
  • This close-up shows the flower stalks.  The top flowers of the stalk are male and the female flowers were found at the base of these stalks on this plant.
  • This pretty flower covers the headland here at Crook Point and is not normally found so close to the beach.  It is a rare plant that only grows in Curry County.
  • This mornings low tide made it easy for this raccoon to get on the offshore island, but the animal waited too long, the tide came in and then it had to swim for shore!  The circles show where the animal was and the path it took to get back to land.
  • Not quite there and so it has to jump back in the water.
  • The raccoon is swimming the last leg of his journey to shore.  This must have been a young one who didn't understand about tides yet.
  • The sand has been slowly covering up the boulders and rocks on the south part of the mile.
June 8, 2009 - D Bilderback
Shells, kelp/algae, animal casings, wood pieces, Hydrozoa, Leather Bryozoa in driftline of middle beach. Two dead Common Murre and one dead Cormorant on beach. No drift on south part of the mile. Gray Whale in bay. 15 California Sea Lions and 25 Steller's Sea Lion on offshore rocks. 14 Harbor...read more
  • From Crook Point headland, looking east.
  • Notice the light drift along the beach here.  On the south beach, the beach was without any drift.
  • This Black Oystercatcher eggshell was found washed up on the shoreline.  It appears to have been pecked, which often happens if the eggs are unattended and a Western Gull happens to see the egg.
  • This was too heavy for us to get out today.
  • The sun has bleached this carapace.  Normally, the crab shell is a olive green color, and so, it is well camouflaged when it hides among the kelp.
  • These three non-nesting Black Oystercatchers (BLOY) had been flying by various offshore BLOY nesting rocks and been being chased by the various parent BLOY birds. So, now they are resting on the beach where no birds will chase them.
April 26, 2009 - D Bilderback
We spent time exploring the intertidal invertebrates just south of Saddle Rock during the low tide today (see photos). A few kelp/algae and small rocks in driftline. One portion of the middle beach had forest duff in the driftline. Sand buildup on the south beach. One Canada Goose on south...read more
  • This pink or white colored hydrochoral is found low in the intertidal area and in areas that tend to remain moist.
  • This photo shows the cup-like feature of this species of red algae.
  • This view shows the cups in profile.
  • These cute Spot-Bellied Crabs were hunkered down along the edge of a large rock.
  • This small (about the size of a quarter) star is often found in crevices or overhangs.
  • This is one of my favorite stars!  It is sitting on the large brown algae, Alaria (Ribbon Kelp).
  • The green and red stripes on this pretty anemone make it easy to identify.
  • This pretty chiton is about two inches long.
  • The bright orange of this chiton caught my eye.  According to Dr. Cynthia Trowbridge, this is a common color variant of this chiton here in Oregon.
  • This dorid nudibranch was placed in a small container for the photo but then put back in the same place in which we found it.
  • The sand is building up and covering the boulders here.
  • There was a light dusting of duff along this beach.
March 31, 2009 - D Bilderback
Little of no drift. Middle beach had some forest duff with some kelp/algae. A few Leather Bryozoa (Flustrellidra spinifera). Found skate eggcase in driftline, probably Longnose Skate (Raja rhina). Deflated rubber raft on beach. 18 Gray Whales migrating offshore. 45 Harbor Seals resting on various rocks. A pair of Black...read more
  • This pretty blue violet is the only plant that the endangered Oregon Silverspot Butterfly lays it's eggs on and uses for food.
  • Normally, we would see many more boulders and rocks in the spring as sand is generally removed during this time of year.  However, as you can see the sand continues to cover most of the cove.
  • These early spring flowers are frequently found on headlands and rocky outcrops near the ocean.
  • From the Crook Point headland to about 1/2 mile south, there was a light covering of duff.
  • This pretty early spring buttercup is a native.  Look for the fuzzy leaves and extra petals on the flowers.
  • This is a common beach plant on dunes as well as rocky headlands that is just starting to bloom now.
  • We saw 45 Harbor Seals today.  The new blades of the kelp, Laminaria are starting to grow already.
  • We think this eggcase is from the Longnose Skate, Raja rhina.
  • We were amazed at how many limpets are gathered on the rocks at the middle of Mile 20.
  • This steep hillside has a new landslide.
March 9, 2009 - D Bilderback
New drift logs distributed on rocks below bluff and numerous small rocks on south beach. Little driftline. Plastic fish container moved onto south beach. Small sticks of wood, duff, Pterygophora stipes and a few kelp/algae in driftline on middle beach. Three small dead Cryptochiton, a few leather Bryozoa, a tunicate,...read more
  • This old engine part probably has come from a past shipwreck and the removal of sand has uncovered it.  It is the first time we have seen this part.
  • This plastic fish bin has been moving down the beach.  For the last half year, it has been stuck on some logs about 1/2 of a mile south of the point and is now is about 3/4 mile south of the point.
  • Sand is being removed from the lower intertidal area revealing the slender red stalks of this algae.  It is highly adapted to being buried in sand for part of the year and then growing quickly in the part of the year that sand is removed.
  • Sand has been moving back out to the ocean, revealing the striped bedrock boulders.  These rocks were layed down deep in the ocean and have been uplifted and then tilted 90 degrees and so look like they are "striped".
  • The red colored algae is Mastocarpus papillatus (Turkish Washcloth).  The small papillae or knobby bumps on the blades of this algae are associate with the reproductive structures.
  • This closeup shows the small papillae or knobby bumps on the blades of the algae that help distinquish this species.
  • This bright green algae was covering the intertidal rocks 1/2 mile south of the point.
  • This was one of three smaller Gumboot Chitons that we found washed up on the beach today.
  • We saw this type of limpet gathering last spring as well.  This is a species of Lotti.
  • Closeup of at least two species of Lotti (limpets) and barnacles. One species has ridges and the other does not.  We think that the small dark-colored limpets are young.
  • This shows the incurrent and excurrent siphons where the animal takes in ocean water with the plankton (food) that it eats and then expels the water and wastes.
  • This large female crab was not moving very well, but was still alive.
  • Here you can see the large spines and tube feet of this pretty sea star.
  • Scientists have moved this species of algae from Hedophyllum to the Saccharina genus.
  • This has just begun to bloom on the headland and is a common plant on high windswept headlands in this area.
February 9, 2009 - D Bilderback
Majority of duff seen in January near the point has been removed leaving two small ridges of duff high on beach and two large six-foot high clumps. We would have really wondered what caused these clumps if we hadn't seen the huge wash-up of duff in January! Large patch of...read more
  • These two smaller piles of duff and two small ridges are all that remains of January's duff washup!
  • These are still large piles of duff and sand.  They are like compacted cement--very hard with both sand and duff intermixed.
  • Lots of sticks in the intertidal area today.  Today's low tide made it easy for us to check out the tidepools for duff, but they were clean.
  • Middle of the mile looking south.  Ocean has been removing sand and scouring the bluff bases here. These large rocks and boulders were not visible in the summer.
  • You can see the bluff erosion here as the ocean is coming all the way into the bluff during these high tides.
  • These high tides are eroding the toe of the landslide in the middle of the mile.
  • Too bad I don't have a better camera, but you can see the American Kestrel flying here.
  • Sand has been removed since last time.  It is unusual to be here at such a low tide and see how much of the intertidal area is exposed.
January 12, 2009 - D Bilderback
We were incredibly surprised to see an extraordinary amount of forest duff (leaves, needles and moss) piled up to a height of 10 to 12 feet on the beach from the headland south to about the middle of Mile 20. We later learned that Curry County experienced very heavy rainfall...read more
  • The rainfall must have been very heavy at Crook Point for this amount of erosion to occur.
  • The piles of duff were so high that you couldn't even see the ocean from the beach!
  • This picture has an orange arrow where Dave is in the duff piles at Crook Point.
  • Most of the moss in the duff was of this type.
  • This gives you an idea of how tall these piles are as Dave is 6' 2" tall!  It was interesting to walk on it as your foot would sink down 4-6 inches deep.
  • Here you can see that the duff is made up of fir/pine needles, old leaves, twigs, moss but with just a few algae thrown in.  So it mainly was coming from land--not the ocean.
  • The largest piles of duff are just at this portion of the beach.
  • Looking back at the headland as Dave (orange arrow) is coming towards me.  Amazing changes for our beach!
  • This was one of the larger landslides along the headland area.
  • This was the other large landslide along the bluff and was closer to the middle of the mile.
  • This is looking south on the south portion of the beach.  Sand has been removed completely from the beach, leaving rocks on the beach.

2008

December 8, 2008 - D Bilderback
Very light and patchy driftline with 21 genera of kelp/algae, a few olive and mussel shells, 2 small Cryptochitons(Gumboot Chitons), one Blood Star (Henricia), several Spot-bellied Rock Crabs (Cancer antennarius), and Dungeness Crab (Cancer magister) carapaces, One Kelp Crab (Pugettia producta) carapace, Feather-duster worm tubes, a few Leather Bryozoa, two...read more
  • This is looking west towards the point.
  • This area has had about 6 feet of sand removed, exposing the cobbles and rocks on this beach.
  • The measuring stick is about 7 inches long and so this animal was large.
  • This shows how clean the beach was as you look north from the south part of the beach.
  • This was one of two small Gumboot Chiton (Cryptochiton stelleri)that had washed up on the beach.  This is the underside, showing the shells as the body of the chiton is gone.
  • While this looks large, most of these animals can grow to 12 to 15 inches, so it is just a young one.
  • The telltale line of ragged sand indicates that the ocean has removed sand from the headland here.
  • Breadcrumb Sponge (Halichondria) often grows around objects, in this case a stick.
  • This closeup shows the grainy texture of this sponge.
  • We often see this sponge washing up along shores here along the south coast.
  • This is just the case that the Featherduster Worm lived in and has now washed ashore. The worm secretes these tubes to attach to rocks or other hard surfaces.
  • This crab died as this carapace shows the feeding parts and part of the shell that would have been lost if it had molted.
  • We found 4 carapaces of this crab on the beach today. This crab also died, as this carapace is not one of a molted crab.
  • We think that the label is written in Chinese and is on a large rusty drum.
  • This drum must have come a long way as the label appears to be Chinese.
  • While it is always unusual to find a Blood Star on the beach, we know that there are many living Blood Stars in the tidepools here.
  • Kelp Crab (Pugettia producta)carapace.  These crabs also are common in the intertidal areas here.
  • The beach is relatively free of algae and kelp today.
  • This dead Western Grebe was found hauled up on the rocks of the northern headland.
  • Western Grebe feet have very distinctly lobed toes making it easy to identify the carcass even if you don't have much of the upper body left.
  • We had help identifing birds and shells as well as carrying out the garbage from Neil Holcomb.  Thanks, Neil!
November 18, 2008 - D Bilderback
Twenty-five species of kelp/algae, clumps of surfgrass, small rocks, Leather Bryozoa, Hydrozoa, Sea pork tunicates, Stylea (Stalked Tunicate), one Cryptochiton, Sponges, jellies, one empty skate eggcase in driftline. Four dead Common Murre, two eaten by a raptor. Owl pellet with small bird bones on Crook Point. Forty Harbor Seals resting...read more
  • This is a picture of the paraglider that was coming directly at us on Crook Point Beach and was reported to USFW and State Parks.
October 2, 2008 - D Bilderback
Kelp/algae (see list in General Comment), wood, Eelgrass (Zostera), Sea Grass (Phyllospadix), a few Spot-bellied Crab (Cancer antennarius) carapaces and Leather Bryozoan (Flestrellia spinifera) found in the driftline. Live birds included one Spotted Sandpiper, 1 Pileated Woodpecker, and several Heermann's Gulls. Sea Roaches (Ligia pallasi) scurrying around rocky outcrops of...read more
  • This animal probably was born in the spring of this year and it is not clear why it died. The wounds to the carcass may have happened after the animal died and it was tossed about in the surf.
  • Dave and I have looked at many dead California Sea Lion teeth and these show the typical decay that we see in these older male animals.
  • This shot is taken from the south end of the beach looking north.
  • Middle of Mile 20 showing the large wash up of kelp and algae today.
  • From the middle of the mile, looking north to the Crook Point headland.  Again, you can see lots of kelp and algae washed up on the shore.
  • This skull has open sutures in the bones of the skull that indicate this was a very young animal, probably a pup.
  • This skull shows the closed sutures of the skull bones and so is clearly an adult animal.
  • Notice the sereated edges of the Harbor Seal teeth.  If you compare them with the teeth of the California Sea Lion (see photo), it is easy to see why we know for sure that this is not a Sea Lion.
  • The ocean was quite rough today, swirling around the off-shore rocks.
  • Starfish don't fly so some animal or bird carried this starfish up to the north headland wall.
August 7, 2008 - D Bilderback
26 species of kelp/algae with Bryozoans, Hydrozoans and a few jellys in the driftline. A Northern Elephant Seal resting on the beach and a California Sea Lion hauled up on the rocks at Crook Point headland. Harbor Porpoises and Gray Whales swimming offshore. Many Harbor Seals hauled out on the...read more
  • Notice the large kelp beds where the Brown Pelicans are feeding.  These large kelp beds are a good fish habitat. Also, note the Harbor Seals on the off-shore rocks.
  • Notice the spots on the carapace that helps identify this as a Spotted Belly Crab (Cancer antennarius).
  • Notice the more curved nature of the spines of the carapace.  These help separate this crab from the Red Rock Crab.
  • We are standing at the bottom of the beach trailhead and looking north.
  • This common small jelly, Red-eye Medusa (Polyorchis pencillatus), is about the about the size of a 1/2 dollar.  These are easy to identify because of the red eyespots along the base of the bell. This was a small wash-up in the southern part of the mile.
  • This beetle was found resting on a rock on the beach.  It eats confir needles.
  • This small vole was found dead on the beach.  It is listed as a near threatened species according to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History website on North American Mammals.
  • The dark lines of sand mark the burrows of the California Beach Hopper, Megalorchestia californiana. The sand on top of the beach is lighter colored than the sand below, making this wonderful pattern to the beach.
  • The California Beach Hopper (Megalorchestia californiana) digs out its burrow by throwing sand from side to side.  When the sand below is darker than the surface sand, it is much easier to see locate the burrow.
  • The middle of Crook Point beach generally has large wash ups of algae and kelp.
  • Northern Elephant Seal resting in the warm sand on the beach.
  • The Lion's Head Jelly (Cyanea capillata) is another common jellyfish to wash up on beaches. They are dark yellow in color and have only a few tenacles on the bell margins.
  • This rock is just south of the Crook Point Headland and is always covered with Harbor Seals.  Today, there are more than we have ever seen before.
  • This California Sea Lion came ashore as we were looking down from the headland.  Once we got home and looked at the pictures, it appeared that there were some cuts on the neck area of this animal.
May 22, 2008 - D Bilderback
Kelp (Alaria (Ribbon Kelp), Polysyphonia, Desmarestia ligulata (Acid Kelp or Broad Acid Weed), several species of Callophyllis (Beautiful Leaf Seaweed), Hymenena (Black-lined Red Seaweed), Cystoseira (Northern Bladder Chain), Prionitis cartilagieum (Sea Braid), Pleurophycus (Broad-rib Kelp), Fucus (Rockweed),Mastocarpus pappillatus (Turkish Washcloth), Pelvetiopsis limitata (Little Rockweed), Ahnfeltia (Wiry Forked Seaweed), Microcladia (Coarse...read more
  • This dark brown ocean color is due to the bloom of diatoms supported by nutrient upwelling.
  • This pretty plant grows right at the edge of the beach and sends it's runners out over rocks.
  • This shows a close-up of the flower.
  • This interesting plant has thick leather-like leaves and grows directly in the sand.
  • This is a common flower on the high part of the beach.
  • This plant has thick leaves that helps it survive growing directly in the sand and in high wind areas.
April 9, 2008 - D Bilderback
On the nearshore headland, we saw a Lupine Blue Butterfly and a Checkerspot Butterfly. During this low tide, we found 8 large Cryptochitons (Gumboot Chitons), 8 Henricia leviuscula (Blood Stars), 1 Dermaterias imbricata (Leather Star), 1 Pisaster brevispinus (Giant Pink Star) and numerous Pisaster ochraceus (Ochre Sea Star). Up against...read more
  • This was the first Giant Pink Star that we had ever seen.  From the tip of arm to the tip of the other arm, it was over 14 inches, so very large by sea star standards.
  • This closeup shows the feathery organs that exchange gases in the water for the sea star.
  • This close up shows the disc area of the Giant Pink Star
  • This large Gumboot Chiton was one of 8 that we found in the tidepool area that we explored. This was over a foot long!
  • We found 8 Blood Star in this tidepool area. Most of them were small, about 4 inches from tip to tip of the arms.
  • We have only found this sea star one other place, in tidepools at the south Humbug Beach.  This one was about 8 inches across the arms.
  • Many common sea stars were found in the tidepools.  This grouping shows some of the different colors of this species.
  • This shows the head area of the nemertea worm.
  • This old engine was found on the beach during this low tide.  Normally, it probably would be covered with water and later in the summer, sand.
  • Footsteps-of-Spring (Sanicula arctopoides) are blooming on Saddle Rock.  These flowers were on many of the other off-shore rocks here.
  • This beautiful small aster (blossom about 1 inch in diameter) covers much of the headlands.
  • The central disk flowers on this Erigeron glaucus is yellow, but they can be more orange.  The ray flowers can be this common pink to lavendar or almost white.
  • This flower is about 1 inch across and is another plant that is found on the headlands of Crook Point.  Unfortunately, this plant is not native.
  • Viola adunca is a beautiful little violet that inhabits the grassy headlands of Oregon and is abundant on Crook Point.  This is the only plant that the listed Silverspot Butterfly caterpillar eats.
March 24, 2008 - D Bilderback
Persistent kelp beds off-shore. Kelp (Cryptopleura (Ruffled Red Seaweed), Mazzaella (Iridescent Seaweed), Ahnfeltia (Wiry Forked Seaweed), Ahnfeltiopsis (Flat-tipped Forked Seaweed), Plocamium (Sea Braid), Rhodymenia (Pacific Rose Seaweed), Hedophyllum (Sea Cabbage), Callophyllis (Beautiful Leaf Seaweed), Corallina (Coral Leaf Seaweeds and is a red coralline algae), Cystoseira (Northern Bladder Chain), Constantinea (Cup...read more
  • Equisetum arvense (Horsetail) sends up fertile shoots and then a brushy, vegetative shoot.
  • Our common huckleberry in full bloom.
  • Sanicula arctopoides (Footsteps-of-Spring) was blooming in many places this visit.
  • Fragaria chiloensis (Wild Strawberry) is blooming nicely now.  This common plant covers many of the open meadows and headlands of our beaches.
  • This is taken from about the middle of Crook Point beach, looking west towards the western headland of Crook Point.
  • We often see Harbor Seals on this off-shore rock.
January 23, 2008 - D Bilderback
Kelp (Constantinea (Cup and Saucer Seaweed), Lessoniopsis (Strap Kelp), Pterygophora (Old Growth Kelp), Hedophyllum (Sea Cabbage), Fucus (Rockweed),Cryptoplura (Ruffled Red Seaweed), Chondracanthus (Turkish Towel), Osmundea (Sea Laurel), Ahnfeltiopsis (Flat-tipped Forked Seaweed), Callophyllis (Beautiful Leaf Seaweed), Hymenena (Black-lined Red Seaweed) and Plocamium(Sea Braid), 4 large dead Cryptochiton (Gum Boot Chiton), Bryozoa,...read more
  • This very large Constantinea (Cup and Saucer Seaweed) was found in the driftline and from a ring count it appeared to be at least 16 years old.
  • This tunicate, Ritterella, was found in the driftline south of Crook Point.
  • This picture shows the driftline south of Crook Point.
  • This was one of four large dead Crytochiton (Gum Boot Chiton) found on the beach.
  • This photo shows the erosion of Pleistocene sands of the North Cove headland and the removal of the sand exposing cobble stones.
  • These off-shore rocks are located just south of the Crook Point headland.
  • Tree slumping in the erosion of the bluff.
  • Minor landslide on the beach south of Crook Point.
  • This fishing storage container has moved south this winter, about 1/4 mile on the beach.
  • Another slump of the headland.

2007

November 8, 2007 - D Bilderback
At North Cove, sand had been removed exposing cobble stones at foot of headland. Invasive Ice Plants were found on the headland of North Cove and on the South Cove near Crook Point. Postelsia and Neurocystis in driftline. Porphyra and Mastocarpus growing on the rocks. Aggregating and Green Anemones on...read more
  • The sand is being removed and leaving a cobble beach at the base of the headland.  At the lower right in this picture, you can see the invasive ice plant on a rock.
  • Rocks showing barnacle scars, indicating a mortality event.
  • The lighter grass area is surrounded with small patches of the invasive ice plant.
  • Heavy drift of algae, leaves and Myrtle seeds.
  • This photo shows Dave as he is looking at the algae in the drift.
  • We found three Gumboot Chitons in the driftline.
  • This shows the sand being removed from the south beach area.
August 30, 2007 - D Bilderback
We were invited to walk the Crook Point beach with David Ledig, South Coast Refuge Manager, and other USFW volunteers. There were many Gray Whales feeding among the kelp and off-shore rocks. A live, but underweight California Sea Lion with a fish tag out of his mouth was on the...read more
  • This California Sea Lion had a fish lure in his mouth.  He looked thin to us. This has been reported to the Marine Mammal Stranding Network.
  • This photo shows the location of the California Sea Lion.
  • The teeth on this jaw were spatulate (like a spatula in shape)and so we are certain that this is a Harbor Porpoise as a dolphin's teeth are conical and sharp.
  • This shows the teeth that are narrow and so distinquish it from its relative, the Great White Shark.
  • This shows the male pelvic clasper fins.
  • This looks like the large bins that fishing boats use to store their catch.  Other than this, the beach was very clean of debris.
  • Broad-rib Kelp, Pleurophycus gardneri (brown algae) has a wide midrib found in driftline is on the the left. A Sea Palm, Postelsia palmaeformis, also a brown algae, is to the right of the Broad-rib Kelp.
February 25, 2007 - D Bilderback
The red algae, Phorphyra and Bangia growing on the rocks. Kelp (Callophyllis, Rhodymenia, Lessoniopsis, Pterygohora, Hedophyllum, Cryptopleura, Ahnfeltia, Ahnfeltiopsis, Callophylis, Constantinea, Mazzaella, Cyptosiphonia, Hedophyllum, Opuntiella, Pyllospadix (surfgrass), one dead Cryptochiton, Bryozoa, Hydrozoa and the Tunicates: Aplidium, Styela and Ritterella; sponges, Feather-duster tube worms, Kelp Crab carapace and ocean-based debris in...read more
  • Raccoon foot prints on the beach.  Diane's boot is for comparison.
  • This part of the beach has some cobbles, showing that sand has been removed since the last time we have been there.
  • This fishing storage container is now up against a log jam at the south end of the beach.
  • These off-shore rocks are about 1/2 mile south of Crook Point.
  • Small landslide on the beach about 1/2 mile south of Crook Point.
  • We think that these eggs are fish eggs, but not sure about it.
  • The suspected fish eggs were in this large clump.
  • Raja rhina (Longnose Skate) egg case was found in the drift area. The ruler markings are in centimeters.
  • Area of heavy drift on the beach south of Crook Point.
  • This shows the driftline looking north to Crook Point.
  • The heaviest driftline is almost at the southern end of this picture, where the beach goes off the picture. This picture also shows how the headland is slumping onto the beach.
  • Sanicula arctopoides blooming on the Crook Point headland.
  • North Cove Overview
  • Armeria maritime was just starting to bloom on the Crook Point Headland.
  • Ranunculus californicus (Buttercup) was just starting to bloom.
  • Lasthenia macrantha subspecies prisca (Goldfields)is a rare Curry County endemic plant.  We have seen this plant on the headlands of Cape Blanco as well as in the North Islands area of the Samuel Boardman State Park.